My scholarly work in literacy and writing studies centers around one question: What makes writing possible? In particular, I study extracurricular literacy practices and use a new materialist framework to examine how the places, objects, and ephemera of daily life mediate, sustain, and sometimes suppress the efforts of ordinary people to establish and maintain a writing practice. My dissertation, Re-Entangling Literacy: A History of Extracurricular Literacies, used the Wisconsin Rural Writers’ Association as a site for examining these questions. An article in progress considers these rural writers’ use of the postal service to circulate their writing and argues that the systems that facilitate the movement of writing also act on writers and writing.
“‘The Advantages of Knowing How to Read and Write’: Literacy, Filmic Pedagogies, and the Hemispheric Projection of U.S. Influence,” an article I co-write with Christa Olson, was published in Literacy in Composition Studies and selected for inclusion in The Best of Independent Composition and Rhetoric Journals 2016; this research, which examines World War II-era educational films promoting literacy, hygiene, and USAmerican values across the Americas, extends my interest in literacy ideologies into a transnational context.